One Pot Creamy Chicken and Penne

This recipe is a winner! The chicken becomes fall-apart tender when braised in a creamy, milk-based sauce. The best part? The whole grain pasta and veggies cook in the sauce too, making this a super-satisfying one-pot meal that the whole family will love.

Total Time: 35 minutes
Makes 4 to 6 servings


6 small boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 500 g)
1/2 tsp (2 mL) each salt and pepper, divided
2 tbsp (30 mL) butter
1 pkg. (454 g) mushrooms, sliced
6 cloves garlic, cut in half or quartered if large
1 onion, sliced
1-1/2 tsp (7 mL) each Italian seasoning and garlic powder
3 tbsp (45 mL) all-purpose flour
4 cups (1 L) milk
2-1/2 cups (750 mL) uncooked whole grain penne pasta
2 cups (500 mL) frozen peas
3 tbsp (45 mL) apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
Optional: shredded Old Cheddar or Asiago Cheese


Sprinkle chicken with a pinch each of salt and pepper. In a large deep non-stick skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add chicken and cook until well-browned, turning once, about 10 minutes; remove to plate.

Increase heat to medium-high; add mushrooms, garlic, onion, Italian seasoning, garlic powder and remaining salt and pepper to skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are browned, and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 6 minutes.

Stir flour into the skillet; cook, stirring for 1 minute. Stirring constantly, slowly pour in milk. Stir in pasta and chicken with accumulated juices, tucking into liquid. Bring to simmer, stirring often. Adjust heat as necessary to maintain simmer; cook stirring often until pasta is almost tender and sauce is still runny, about 10 minutes. (If sauce is reducing too quickly, stir in enough water to keep it saucy and pasta submerged, adding 2 tbsp/30 mL of water at a time).

Stir in peas and vinegar; cook, until pasta is al dente and sauce is desired consistency, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese, if using.

Vegetarian Version

Replace the chicken with 1 can (19 oz/540 mL)  chickpeas, drained and rinsed. Add the chickpeas when adding the frozen peas in the last step.